3rd Workshop on Sustainable Software for Science: Practice and Experiences (WSSSPE2) CFP1

First Call for Participation:
3rd Workshop on Sustainable Software for Science Practice and Experiences (WSSSPE3)

September 28-29, 2015, Boulder, CO
(Co-located with 10th Gateway Community Environments (GCE15) Workshop)

Progress in scientific research is dependent on the quality and accessibility of software at all levels and it is now critical to address many new challenges related to the development, deployment, and maintenance of reusable software. In addition, it is essential that scientists, researchers, and students are able to learn and adopt a new set of software-related skills and methodologies. Established researchers are already acquiring some of these skills, and in particular a specialized class of software developers is emerging in academic environments who are an integral and embedded part of successful research teams. WSSSPE provides a forum for discussing these challenges, including presenting both positions and experiences, as well as a forum for the community to assemble and act.

The WSSSPE1 workshop (http://wssspe.researchcomputing.org.uk/wssspe1) engaged the broad scientific community to identify challenges and best practices in areas relevant to sustainable scientific software.  WSSSPE2  (http://wssspe.researchcomputing.org.uk/wssspe2) invited the community to propose and discuss specific mechanisms to move towards an imagined future practice of software development and usage in science and engineering.

WSSSPE3 will organize self-directed teams that will collaborate prior to and during the workshop to create vision documents, proposals, papers, and action plans that will help the scientific software community produce software that is more sustainable, including developing sustainable career paths for community members. These teams are intended to lead into working groups that will be active after the workshop, if appropriate, working collaboratively to achieve their goals, and seeking funding to do so if needed.

The main aim for this first call for participation is to collect additional ideas for teams to work on at WSSSPE3 (via email; see below.)

Initial ideas for these team activities, based on the breakout groups in WSSSPE2, are:

  • Development and Community
    • Writing a white paper/review paper about best practices in developing sustainable software
    • Documenting successful models for funding specialist expertise in software collaborations
    • Creating and curating catalogs for software tools that aid sustainability (perhaps categorized by domain, programming languages, architectures, and/or functions, e.g., for code testing, documentation)
    • Documenting case studies for academia/industry interaction
  • Training
    • Writing a white paper on training for developing sustainable software, and coordinating multiple ongoing training-oriented projects
    • Developing curriculum for software sustainability, and ideas about where such curriculum would be presented, such as a summer training institute
  • Credit
    • Hacking the credit and citation ecosystem (making it work, or work better, for software)
    • Developing a taxonomy of contributorship/guidelines for including software contributions in tenure review
    • Documenting case studies of receiving credit for software contributions
    • Developing a system of awards and recognitions to encourage sustainable software
  • Publishing
    • Developing a categorization of journals that publish software papers (building on existing work), and case studies of alternative publishing mechanisms that have been shown to improve software discoverability/reuse e.g., popular blogs/websites
    • Determining what journals that publish software paper should provide to their reviewers (e.g., guidelines, mechanisms, metadata standards, etc.)
  • Reproducibility and testing
    • Building a toolkit that could allow conference organizers to easily add a reproducibility track
    • Documenting best practices for code testing and code review

Additional community suggestions are welcomed and encouraged!! (via email; see below)

Workshop Format:

  • Opening keynote TBA
  • Lightning talks – submissions welcome (via EasyChair, see below)
  • Team sessions – initial list of possible sessions above; submissions of additional ideas welcome (via email, see below)
  • Team progress report-back to plenary group
  • At the end of the workshop, teams will “pitch” their ideas to the audience, possibly including some funders (who would not committed to funding anything, just providing feedback), including e.g., Moore, Sloan, Digital Science, NSF, NIH.

Call for Participation / Actions:

  1. Save the dates for WSSSPE3: 28-29 September, 2015, Boulder, CO
  2. Suggest additional team actions – Please propose your ideas by email (with subject WSSSPE3) to d.katz@ieee.org by 8 July, 2015
  3. Submit lightning talks – submit a 1-page PDF containing the talk title, author names, affiliations, and a short abstract via Easychair, http://bit.ly/wsssep3-submit, by 3 August, 2015
  4. Join the WSSSPE mailing list to be sure to get further information on WSSSPE3 – via http://bit.ly/wssspe-list

Travel Support:

Some limited travel support is likely to be available; please check the workshop web page.

Important Dates:

  • Deadline for suggestions for new team activities: 8 July 2015 (any time of day, no extensions)
  • Initial list of team activities to be posted on WSSSPE3 web page: 22 July 2015
  • Lightning talk submissions: 3 August 2015 (any time of day, no extensions)
  • Workshop: 28-29 September 2015
  • Post-workshop report writing (participation is open to all): 30 September 2015


  • Daniel S. Katz, d.katz@ieee.org, University of Chicago & Argonne National Laboratory, USA
  • Gabrielle Allen, gdallen@illinois.edu, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, USA
  • Sou-Cheng (Terrya) Choi, sctchoi@uchicago.edu,  NORC at the University of Chicago and Illinois Institute of Technology, USA
  • Neil Chue Hong, N.ChueHong@software.ac.uk, Software Sustainability Institute, University of Edinburgh, UK
  • Sandra Gesing, sandra.gesing@nd.edu, University of Notre Dame, USA
  • Lorraine J. Hwang, ljhwang@ucdavis.edu, University of California, Davis, USA
  • Manish Parashar, parashar@rutgers.edu, Rutgers University, USA
  • Erin Robinson, erinrobinson@esipfed.org, Foundation for Earth Science, USA (local organizer)
  • Matthew Turk, matthewturk@gmail.com, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, USA
  • Colin C. Venters, colin.venters@googlemail.com, University of Huddersfield, UK